Mocha Cappuccino Cupcakes & Caramel Buttercream Frosting

mocha cappuccino cupcake/caramel buttercream frosting

I am always thinking about different flavors and types of cupcakes to make.  I wanted to make cupcakes today.  I had a box of chocolate fudge cake mix, and some cappuccino powdered mix that Carrie gave to me and thought, “Mmm, mocha cappuccino cupcakes.”  After pawing through all the flavorings I have on hand I chose the caramel to make the frosting. 

Before you begin to make the cupcakes or the frosting, make the chocolate swirls so that they have time to set up. 

To make chocolate swirls, melt 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips in a small microwave safe bowl for 30 seconds. Stir.  Keep melting for intervals of 20 seconds, stirring between intervals, until the chocolate is melted and creamy (Don’t over heat the chocolate. It shouldn’t be hot, it should be just lukewarm). Using a plastic disposable pastry bag and a round decorating tip-#7, pipe chocolate, making swirls, onto wax paper lined sheet pan.  Put into swirls into refrigerator until ready to use. 

chocolate swirls

To make cupcakes, use any boxed chocolate cake mix.  If you have the time and the energy, make them from scratch.  Follow instructions on back of box, but increase water to 1 ½ cup and add ¼ cup of instant cappuccino mix. Use any kind of cappuccino mix.  For an intense espresso flavor I would suggest using 1 ½ teaspoons of espresso granules to the cappuccino mix.  Follow instructions on back of box for baking cupcakes.

mocha cappuccino cupcakes

Caramel Buttercream Frosting

1/2 cup good quality vegetable shortening
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 teaspoon cocoa powder (for color) and a little more for dusting
1 teaspoons vanilla extract
½ teaspoon caramel flavoring
4 cups of sifted confectioners’ sugar
2 or more tablespoons heavy cream

Note: Scrape down sides of bowl often.

  • Sift your four cups of confectioners’ sugar in to a large bowl and set aside.
  • Cream shortening and butter in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed.
  • Add vanilla and caramel flavoring to butter and shortening mixture and beat well on medium speed.
  • Stop mixer and add cocoa powder and sifted confectioner’s sugar a cup at a time. Beat on low speed (otherwise you will have sugar all over the place) until sugar is incorporated into the butter mixture then turn mixer to medium speed and beat for about 30 seconds. Keep doing this until you have used all of the confectioner’s sugar. Mixture will be dry.
  • Add cream, 1 tablespoon at a time, until you get a medium consistency.
  • Keep beating until light and fluffy for 5 or more minutes again, scraping down sides of bowl often.

Frost cupcakes as you desire. Dust cocoa powder on top of each frosted cupcake then top each with a chocolate swirl (carefully remove swirls with a small spatula). 

Keep cupcakes in refrigerator as the chocolate may melt.

mocha cappuccino cupcakes/caramel buttercream frosting

7 thoughts on “Mocha Cappuccino Cupcakes & Caramel Buttercream Frosting

  1. Hi Liz,

    I want to use your caramel buttercream frosting for a cake though I was wondering if you can recommend a good cake that would match it. Besides me doing a chocolate cake what esle would you recommend? It is for my daughters birthday cake which is going to be in the shape of winnie the pooh. Love the frosting!!!! You have talent!


    1. Hi Klaudia,

      Flavors that go well with caramel would be peanut butter or banana. I found two recipes for a peanut butter cake.

      Peanut Butter Cake #1 uses a packaged cake mix.

      Peanut Butter Cake #2 is made from scratch.

      There is one cake that I absolutely love found at Wilton. It is a ‘butter cake‘ with a hint of almond flavor. This cake would also go well with a caramel frosting.

      I also have a banana cake recipe. If you are interested in that recipe, I would be happy to pass it along.

      I hope your daughter’s birthday is a truly special day and everyday thereafter.


  2. wow, what a art work, I would very much like a taste 😉
    You are still very buzzy I can se, with baking, planting, knitting and crocheting.
    I am still doing nothing but reading and sleeping *|o|*
    Hope you will have a great Easter time.


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